Gem Educare is a multicultural, educational setting for children ages 0 to 5. This home-based environment gives children the opportunity to play and learn with developmentally appropriate toys and activities that help expand their physical, emotional, cognitive and mental growth. The owner, Eileen Manoukian, realized her passion for working with children after volunteering in South Africa. She opened Gem Educare in 2016 and is a doctoral candidate in the field of early childhood education.
“If we pay attention to kids, we will learn a lot from them.”
In what ways does your business stand out?
“Gem Educare is the first and only daycare/preschool that implements the Awareness Integration Model, which is focused on children’s emotional intelligence and well-being. We use a play-based, child-directed philosophy to teach children how to distinguish between their emotions, thoughts and behaviors and realize the impact of their behavior on themselves and others. We teach them how to alter the behavior to get a desirable impact by talking to them and creating a safe space for them to express their thoughts and feelings. We help them release negative feelings and calm down by applying specific techniques, which changes their mood and behavior. We hold meetings with parents where we train them to use these methods at home.”
Do you provide enrichment activities for kids?
“Yes. Children learn by experimenting and using their imagination, creativity and skills in a fun and joyful environment. We provide a unique environment especially designed with children’s developmental needs in mind, and they are encouraged to express themselves the way they choose.”
What does it take to run a kid-related business?
“Passion and love for kids and of course a lot of patience, caring and compassion.”
What feedback do you get from your youngest customers?
“Well, they love being here so much they don’t want to go home at the end of the day.”
How did you come up with your business’ name?
“Children are the most precious beings. Gem represents that. Educare is a combination of the words Education and Caring, which is what we are doing.”